'Major' book on Sky and Murdoch's empire to Bloomsbury Business

'Major' book on Sky and Murdoch's empire to Bloomsbury Business

Bloomsbury Business has signed a new book about Sky and Rupert Murdoch's empire in a "major" acquisition.

Publisher Ian Hallsworth bought world all language rights to The Battle for Sky by deputy business editor of the Daily Telegraph Christopher Williams.

The book will tell the story of how Sky became one of Britain's most successful companies and "the hottest property" in global entertainment. From the company's perilous early years, through battles with the BBC and BT and European expansion, and the failed Murdoch bid for full control seven years ago.

Two titans of the global media industry, Disney and Comcast, are now fighting it out for ownership of Sky as part of the sale of 21st Century Fox. It is an "unprecedented situation" that is testing Britain's politicians and regulators, and signals tectonic shifts in entertainment that are being driven by the threat from Silicon Valley players such as Netflix, said the publisher.

Williams said: "Now is the time for the inside story of one of Britain's most innovative and aggressive companies to be told. Sky has been transformed from a broadcaster of British football and Hollywood films into a pan-European giant making its own programmes, providing broadband and mobile packages, and challenging the tech giants in the shift to online streaming. It has been a story driven by big personalities, fierce ambitions and raw politics. There will be plenty more twists in the tale by the time we publish.”

Hallsworth said: “Bloomsbury Business is delighted to be publishing this new book by Christopher Williams, which couldn’t be more timely nor offer a more intriguing glimpse into the workings of the Murdoch empire. With Christopher’s considerable experience in reporting on the media industry, as well as his connections to the key players in this particular story, we couldn’t have asked for a more skilled and readable author.”

The Battle for Sky will be published by Bloomsbury Business in February 2019, supported by a "dynamic" promotional campaign.